Spending Your Advertising Budget Wisely

images (3)A recent report by admanGo focuses on some recent Hong Kong advertising spending figures. Confirming everyone’s suspicions, the total ad spend in the city in January and February of this year was HK$6.01 billion – representing a 13 percent drop compared to the same period last year, and the first double-digit decrease since 2000.

Magazine advertising was particularly hard hit, falling by 28 percent, while Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB), one of Hong Kong’s major TV channels, recorded a 9 percent drop in its ad revenue.

The main reason cited for this drop is the continuing decrease in retail sales due to fewer visitors arriving from the mainland, and that is true to an extent – we have all taken a hit from that. However, the reality is that traditional media advertising has been becoming less popular for years.

The good news is that this doesn’t mean your advertising spend has to be less effective – far from it. By choosing the proper channels and targeting the right audiences, you can still ensure that your advertising budget delivers excellent value for money.

Digital brings targeted results and better returns
In Hong Kong, today’s typical consumer takes in brand information through a range of different channels. With digital becoming increasingly more dominant, particularly mobile channels, brands that apply multi-channel, multi-platform advertising are experiencing outstanding results. They are deepening engagement and increasing their interaction with their target audiences, and doing so at a reduced cost.

For years, experts have been saying that digital platforms are the future. That future has now arrived. With the incredible power and portability of today’s technology, digital advertising – especially mobile and social media ads – can send finely-tuned messages to highly-specific audiences at a very reasonable cost.

Digital can activate engagements across different touchpoints in both the digital and physical worlds, and soft selling via games, social media, or app-based promotions is helping to boost two-way communication and making messaging more personal. All this is driving customer behaviour and taking advertising in bold new directions.

Apps, with their relatively low cost and potentially huge reach, are becoming the preferred method of mobile engagement for companies. Apps using augmented reality can provide useful services like directions to preferred restaurants and instantaneous translation, or they can bring embedded digital content in static ads to life via QR codes. The best part is that when done well, these apps do not even seem like advertising.

Real-time location-based mobile ads are now becoming mainstream, allowing audiences who opt in to receive product news, deals, and discounts that are targeted specifically to them when they are nearby a particular store or branch. By filtering promotions based on location, demographics, and other available user information, this method of advertising allows companies to create highly specific promotions for precise audience segments at comparatively low cost.

Social media also provides ‘low cost, high reach’ exposure. Success stories of posts and videos ‘going viral’ on Facebook abound, while today some campaigns are run exclusively on Twitter and Instagram. Take the “1600 Pandas World Tour in Hong Kong: Creativity Meets Conservation” event as an example. The campaign brought 1,600 irresistible papier-mâché pandas to Hong Kong to raise awareness of the importance of panda conservation work.

Before the exhibition began, these small but loveable pandas began appearing at various landmarks like Victoria Park, the Hong Kong Cultural Centre, and on trams, with citizens and celebrities alike taking photos and selfies with the pandas and sharing them on Facebook. The campaign generated many shares and likes, creating a lot of excitement and awareness for comparatively little investment.

Aside from these new methods of ad delivery, we are also seeing incredible advances on the measurement side as well. Big data technology is allowing us to measure the effectiveness of ads in ways that were impossible even a few years ago.

Thanks to the proliferation of addressable media, including targeted online ads and traceable social media activity, we can now measure the return on investment of discrete digital marketing channels. We can also get a full picture of the effectiveness of a digital marketing campaign in real time, allowing for timely adjustments to an on-going campaign and recalibration for future campaigns.

Consistency is paramount
This is a pivotal development. Traditional media advertising delivered a one-way message. Today, social media ads are fully two-way – engaging with customers on a small-scale level, sometimes even one-to-one. The aim of traditional advertising campaigns was usually quite linear, designed to convert targets into customers and get them to purchase products.

Today, a campaign can have multiple aims, moving from online to offline and back again. Ads can be designed to drive traffic to a website, or attract people into physical or digital stores, or simply to get them to ‘like’ a particular social media page.

In this fast-moving and complex digital environment, it is vital that the brand promise and any associated messaging is clear, consistent, and rock solid. With ads running on multiple platforms and channels, every element, platform, and channel must be aligned with a single brand promise, and all messaging must be working in the service of that promise.

To spend your advertising budget sensibly, you must frequently review your strategy and make sure that it is relevant. Despite the downturn in the retail market, companies that embrace digital and follow a holistic, integrated strategy will continue to be successful and enjoy handsome returns on their advertising spend.

 

Why Your Retail Business Is Failing Without Content Marketing

download (6)Content marketing isn’t just publishing a few blog posts a week. It’s about more than just being a company-it’s about being a brand that believes in something.

Without a content marketing strategy that embodies the vision of your company and brand, your business will lose loyal customers and advocates. If your retail business is failing to build a stickiness with your customer base, here’s why and how to fix it.

INSPIRE CUSTOMERS, DON’T TREAT THEM LIKE TRANSACTIONS

The ideal customer is one that connects with your brand, and unless you have a steady stream of messaging that speaks to your customers to reinforce why you’re the go-to for the products you sell, they’ll forget. Instead of focusing solely on sales and discounts, inspire your customers with a message that resonates with them.

Fashion retailers, for example, can put together lookbooks for what style fits “you” best. Nordstrom advertises its lookbooks to several customers based on their web behavior and purchase history:

DON’T BE JUST A VENDOR

Not adding value beyond the products you sell doesn’t differentiate you from competition. Customer loyalty is built beyond being a vendor. Show your customers that you understand their needs and why they find your products valuable.

REI launched an extremely successful content marketing campaign this year when the company told shoppers REI stores would be closed on Black Friday, urging customers to spend the day outside and share their experiences using the hashtag #optoutside on social:

This campaign shows customers that REI understands them and their use of REI’s products. The company sells outdoor gear, so why not build a campaign around that and encourage customers to spend the day doing what they love – with the products they’ve purchased from REI. The added bonus beyond great press and encouraging customer loyalty? #optoutside being shared across several social platforms.

LACK OF BRAND AWARENESS

Brand awareness is always on the radar for marketing departments, but without incorporating content marketing into your digital strategy your company is missing out on massive opportunity. Brand awareness is more than pushing your name out to new audiences, it’s about showing your audience that your company is more than a store – it’s people running a business.

Content marketing helps gives brands a personality and connect customers with the people working inside of the company. Connect with your customers outside of being a brand that sells clothing they like; be a brand that believes in something. That type of messaging encourages social sharing, new followers, and a new way of reaching customers that puts you way ahead of competition.

4 Things to Consider for Using Promotional Products

download (5)The prevailing marketing strategy for most businesses includes the usage of promotional items. This is because these are more cost-effective than any other medium of advertising. Another thing to consider, in this case, is that people like to get free gifts. As a result of this, the companies get promoted through the word of mouth if they offer more freebies to their customers. However, it is always a difficult decision to integrate this medium properly into your marketing plan. This is the reason why here are some of the tips that will help you integrate your personalised business items with your business strategy suitably.

Plan – This is the first thing to take note of because this is undoubtedly the most important one. Any marketing plan needs a lot of considerations and but integrating the items with your business goals can be trickier. Before ordering you should think clearly about what you need, who the target audience for you are and how you are integrating this with your advertising goals. This pre-planning must be complete several weeks before placing the order. After receiving the items, you should count them and then take some quick customer feedback about whether they like the gift.

• Promotion rather than overshadowing – While deciding the object make sure that they are meant to highlight your business and not overshadow them. These are intended to get your customers excited about your product. So you should make the choice accordingly.

Proper Reflection of your business – At the time of making the choice make sure what each item conveys about your business. You should also consider if those freebies will be appropriate for the group of consumers that you are targeting. You should also give a thought about whether they portray your core business values.

Plethora of choice – While selecting personalised objects for business promotions, there are several times when you get tempted to purchase a single item for a greater amount of discount. But for general marketing, you should consider a variety of articles. One product is quite good for promotions and events. But for the rest of the occasions, there should be a range of products, on the basis of size, usage, actual value and perceived value. This is necessary because different events call for different gifts. For example, you should not gift one of your most loyal customers with just a keychain. That is why you should always opt for a variety of options.

The above are some of the tips that you must consider for advertising using these.

 

Different Components Of A Marketing Mix

the-marketing-mixThere are several ways for promoting a product in various areas of media. Promoters today use the online advertisements, endorsements, special events, and magazines or newspapers to promote their products and/or services. For customers frequently purchasing their products, there can be incentives given like free items and discounts.

The act of advertising a great service with either a short or long term goal of boosting sales is product promotion. Lots of companies these days make use of various marketing techniques through different communication mediums. Today, not a single medium is better than another since the most efficient medium to use will greatly depend on the type of product you are showcasing.

Nowadays, more and more companies are considering of using social media channels to advertise their products and services. Know that with these methods, companies will have the ability to showcase their offerings to anyone. In fact, because of the popularity of social media, most businesses had great success in showcasing their products, most especially to the younger generations who prefer to go online rather than watching the television or reading newspapers.

Basically, there are 3 main objectives of promotion. These are to increase demand, to differentiate a single product from other competing or similar products, and to present information to your target audience.

5 Components Of A Marketing Mix

Advertising – An identified sponsor will present ideas, goods, or services. Examples of these are print ads, brochures, direct mail, billboard, posters, motion pictures, banner ads, emails, in-store displays, and Web pages.

Sales Promotion – Both media and non-media marketing communication are used for a limited time in order to boost consumer demand, enhance product accessibility, and stimulate the demands of the market. Examples of this will include contests, self-liquidating premiums, product samples, coupons, trade shows, exhibitions, and tie-ins.

Direct Marketing – This is an advertising form allowing businesses to communicate straight to the clients. Techniques will include interactive consumer websites, email, mobile messaging, promotional letters, outdoor advertising, fliers, and catalog distribution.

Personal Selling – This is a process of persuading prospects to buy your products or services or perhaps to act on any idea with the use of oral presentations. Examples are samples, telemarketing, and sales presentations and training.

Public Relations – This is done by planting significant news about the goods you offer or perhaps a great presentation of it in the media. Examples will include charitable contributions, seminars, radio and TV presentations, and speeches.

The competition in today’s market arena is very tight and crowded. Hence, for businesses wanting to stand out from the competition, they must use excellent marketing techniques. Hosting events can be a great strategy.